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SBU prevents sale of radioactive materials in Ukraine (video)

SBU counter intelligence officers during the multistage special operation prevented the sale of radioactive material Radium-226 in our country.

The SBU operatives established that the participants of the organized group were preparing the fraud of selling the radioactive material Radium-226 smuggled into Ukraine from the Central Europe. The law enforcers uncovered the cache in the private yard at a depth of over 2 m. The specialists seized the cylindrical container with the radioactive material.

The SBU officers in the framework of the criminal proceeding initiated under Part 3 Article 265 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine, involving the “Alfa” Special Operations Centre officials detained six members of the organized group. Three of them were served a notice of suspicion in committing the crime. The court chose to them the measure of restraint in the form of custody.

The SBU officers identified all accomplices of the crime involved in the illegal trafficking of the radioactive materials. The investigative actions on establishing their roles are now being conducted.

The seized material was sent to Institute for Nuclear Research of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, where Radium-226 was identified after examination. The source of origin of the radioactive material was established - it was manufactured in 1930s by the Czechoslovak company “Radiumchema”. Due to the joint urgent actions of the SBU and the involved state bodies, the possible negative consequences for life and health of the population were localized.

The pre-trial investigation is under way.

Reference: According to the experts’ conclusions, Radium-226 in such quantity is a powerful source of gamma radiation, it could lead to radioactive contamination of people and the locality without screening and appropriate storage. The ingestion of the material from the container to the open area could lead to poisoning of 20 ha. The presence of this radioactive material in the illegal circulation is a serious public danger for life and health of the population and could create ecological disaster in Ukraine. The use of Radium-226 by the offenders for terrorist and extremist purposes as a component of the explosive device of the so-called "dirty bomb" could lead to the catastrophic consequences in the international level.

SBU Press Centre


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Zhydkov Dmytro Mykhailovych
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Shevchenko Daniil Borysovych
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